- to increase in intensity, magnitude, etc.: to escalate a war; a time when prices escalate.
- to raise, lower, rise, or descend on or as if on an escalator.
Origin of escalate
First recorded in 1920–25; back formation from escalator
Synonyms for escalate
Antonyms for escalate
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
- to increase or be increased in extent, intensity, or magnitudeto escalate a war; prices escalated because of inflation
Word Origin for escalate
C20: back formation from escalator
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper